photoshop creative

Take portraits further

Posted in:
Tips & Tutorials, by Mark White
December 12, 2014

Use one, or all of these techniques, in your quest for portrait perfection…

1. Black and white

Open your portrait and crop. Go to Layer>New Adjustment layer>Black and White. Keep the default settings. (Elements: Enhance>Adjust Colour>Adjust Hue/Saturation and desaturate.)

2. Spotlight effect

Add a new layer and go to Image>Apply Image. Go to Filter>Render>Lighting Effects. Set the colour to #FDE6DE, and experiment with the settings. (Elements: use a radial gradient to get the effect.)

3. Colour correction

Experiment to bring about a sharp increase in the shades of blue in the image. The aim is to achieve one dominant colour for the portrait to stand out against the rest of the shades. Go to Layer>New Adjustment Layer>Curves. On the RGB channel, bring the middle and top section of the curve up, and lower section down to create contrast between lights and shadows.

4. Add a Bokeh

You can find great Bokeh images all over the web, or you can create it with brushes and blurs. Experiment on a new black-filled layer and then set to Screen.

5. Final touches

To finish off a portrait, use the Dodge and Burn tools to bring out the lighter and darker aspects of the picture, and to enhance the lights, shadows and details of the subject in addition to the background of the portrait.